Snips from the magazine’s website page: She’s an award-winning novelist, a TED talk sensation and Beyoncé’s favourite feminist. But Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie has many more stories to tell, as Erica Wagner discovers for the April 2015 issue of Vogue – out now.

Chimamanda+Adichie+Vogue+UK+Interview+Zen+Magazine+AfricaAward-winning author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie has written books like
Americanah, Half of Yellow Sun and Purple Hibiscus

Born in 1977 in Eastern NigeriaChimamanda Ngozi Adichie is inspiring a whole new generation of young Africans through her words and books. Interviewed in Lagos, by the shores of the Lagos Lagoon, Vogue writer, Erica Wagner, talks to Chimamanda about her collaboration with Beyoncé, racism, her fashion and so much more. Below are a few snips from the magazine’s interview with Chimamanda, with the questions rephrased in our own words:

Vogue: What did you feel about your collaboration with Beyoncé for the single ‘Flawless’?
Chimamanda: “I am a person who writes and tells stories. That’s what I want to talk about. There’s an obsession with celebrity that I have never had. But the one thing I will say is that I really do think Beyoncé is a force for good, as much as celebrity things go. I know there has been lot of talk in the past year about how feminism is ‘cool’ now, but I think if we are honest, it’s not a subject that’s easy. She didn’t have to do this, she could have taken on, I don’t know, world peace. Or nothing at all. And I realize that so many young people in our celebrity-obsessed world, well, suddenly they are thinking about this. And that’s a wonderful thing. So I don’t have any reservations about having said yes.”

Vogue: What are your thoughts on the oppression of women?
Chimamanda: “Makes me angry. I can’t not be angry. I don’t know how you can just be calm. My family says to me, ‘Oh, you’re such a man!’ – you know, very lovingly… But of course I’m not, I just don’t see why I shouldn’t speak my mind.”

Nigerians need to make a space for dreaminess. But life is short.” says Chimamanda

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Vogue: Did you know that Chimamanda designs some of her clothes herself? 
Chimamanda: I do all these drawings for my clothes. Really terrible drawings. But I love to do them, and he gave me the crayons so I could add a little bit of colour.”

Vogue: When speaking about the issue on race…..
Chimamanda: “I only became black when I came to America. In Nigeria I’m not black. We don’t do race in Nigeria. We do ethnicity a lot, but not race. My friends here don’t really get it. Some of them sound like white Southerners from 1940. They say, ‘Why are black people complaining about race? Racism doesn’t exist!’ It’s just not a part of their existence.”

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Vogue: On Ava DuVernay’s movie, Selma, being almost entirely overlooked by the Oscars….
Chimamanda: “I took that very personally. It’s almost a slap in the face for a person who wants to believe in some kind of progress; 2014 was such a difficult year for America and race. Even when I’m not in the US, I follow what’s going on, I’m very emotionally invested. And I find myself thinking that maybe I’ll write an essay about it: looking at the idea that there’s something similar in the way that American society looks at black men who commit crime and women of any colour who report a rape. And I think the similarity is that you are expected to be perfect and pure before you can get any sympathy, any human empathy.”

Vogue: On why she loves teaching and continues to push for the development of local authors 
Chimamanda: “”I want to make it valid, to dream about books and writing. Because in Nigeria it’s very hard; people will say to you, what do you mean, ‘writing’? Nigerians are a very, very practical people. And while I admire practicality, I feel we need to make a space for dreaminess. But life is short. I’ll say, don’t give up your job. Get up earlier, make the space. If it matters to you, make it matter. I wrote Purple Hibiscus when I was an undergraduate. I was my sister’s unpaid housekeeper, I was cooking, taking care of my nephew – I got up at 2am to write.”

Chimamanda+Adichie+Vogue+UK+Interview+Zen+Magazine+Africa3Chimamanda is wearing a Stella Jean
dress made with African prints

My family says, ‘Oh, you’re such a man!’ But I don’t see why I shouldn’t speak my mind.”

Chimamanda+Adichie+Vogue+UK+Interview+Zen+Magazine+Africa2Chimamanda is wearing a matching top
and skirt by Rukky Simone

I’m not the kind of person who can manufacture things when I don’t care deeply about them.”

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Read the full interview on Vogue, visit vogue.co.uk
To connect with Chimamanda on Facebook, visit Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie 
Photo Credit: Akintunde Akinleye

Note: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie will be delivering the inaugural Folio Society Lecture to open The Folio Prize Fiction Festival on Friday 20th of March, 2015. For more details, visit the www.bl.uk